Exnihilo Art Award: Art Scholarship Recognising Out Island Students

By Keisha Oliver

Exnihilo Art Center recently announced the launch of the Exnihilo Art Award. This partial scholarship is intended to recognise the achievement and excellence in the arts among Bahamian Out Island students.

The Exnihilo Art Award is a merit-based, portfolio scholarship that will be awarded to a single recipient for one year. The awardee must be enrolled or have been accepted into a full-time Associate’s or Bachelor’s Degree programme at an accredited tertiary education institution with a focus on visual arts, music, creative writing, media, and film, or theatre.

The award has a maximum value of $1,000. Extensions may be given to students who maintain a minimum GPA of 3.0. Applications are now being accepted via www.exnihiloretreat.com/scholarship. Entrants must submit applications online and mail supporting information postmarked no later than September 30, 2016. Late or incomplete submissions will not be accepted. Exnihilo Art Center is a non-profit organisation based in The Bahamas and US, which focuses on the arts, environment, cultural exchange and creative economy. Founded and managed by working artists, the organisation manages multiple projects and initiatives to support its mission.

Exnihilo is dedicated to providing opportunities to young, creative individuals who are interested in making a significant, positive contribution to the Bahamian community through the arts. Exnihilo partner Michael Edwards said, “The organisation seeks to cultivate an environment that is conducive to creative expression, and to assist in removing financial barriers that could hinder the progress of enterprising individuals.“

Last July Bahamian ceramicist Alistair Stevenson, who is pursuing studies at the Jingdezhen Ceramics Institute in China, was Exnihilo’s first artist in residence. During his four-week residency, which provided funding, resources and a studio space Stevenson produced a collection of ceramics inspired by Bahamian and Chinese mythology.

The work was exhibited in a group show entitled “Flourish” at the D’Aguilar Art Foundation last August to support his studies for the following academic year. Stevenson concluded the residency with an artist talk at The National Art Gallery of the Bahamas discussing his experience and the new direction of his work. This past March, Exnihilo hosted its first workshop “Learn the Art of Silversmithing” in Nassau. Art enthusiasts, students, and professional artists came together to learn soldering, sawing, drilling, hammering, and texturing techniques with Exnihilo Co-founder, Blair Anderson. Anderson said,